The scandal that wasn't

Granted, I'm no media critic. But was yesterday's Globe story on Tom Reilly and the Big Dig baffling, or what?

At the beginning of the piece--provocatively titled "Questions shadow Reilly's Big Dig cost recovery"-- we learn that, soon after the Marie St. Fleur debacle, Reilly upped his demand for a refund from contractor Bechtel/Parsons Brinckerhoff by $20 million. The implication, obviously, is that Reilly asked for more money to help himself recover politically. The smoking gun? Lawyers for Bechtel said so!

Um, no offense, but Bechtel's lawyers aren't exactly impartial observers here. In fact, since Bechtel and Reilly have an inherently adversarial relationship, I'd say they have close to zero credibility when it comes to parsing Reilly's motivations.

The story also asks if Reilly should have gotten involved with Big Dig cost recovery earlier, should have worked harder, etc. But the people raising these questions either seem to know nothing about the details of the case (David Luberoff, director of Harvard's Rappaport Institute, is "not familiar with the specifics of Reilly's decision") or to have as little credibility as Bechtel's lawyers (this means you, Christy Mihos!).

Weird stuff.

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